Visitors Guide to the
Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum

One Brookings Drive, Washington University
St. Louis, MO

Accessible Parking Picnic Facilities Accessible Art Exhibits Accessible Gift Shop Accessible Restrooms MetroLink Station Nearby

The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum at Washington University in St. Louis is one of the oldest teaching museums in the country and the oldest art museum west of the Mississippi River. Established in 1881 as the St. Louis School and Museum of Fine Arts, a department of Washington University, the Museum was initially located in a neo-Renaissance building in downtown St. Louis under the direction of artist Halsey C. Ives. Its collection was formed in the large part by acquiring significant works by artists of the time.

In 1906, the collection was moved to the Palace of Fine Arts in Forest Park, a building designed by architect Cass Gilbert for the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition. In 1909, the public St. Louis Art Museum was formed and detached from the private Washington University. The University collection, however, remained on loan there for the next several decades. In 1941 German exile H.W. Janson joined the faculty of Washington University's Department of Art History and Archaeology and initiated an expansive program to revitalize the University's Museum. Over 600 objects were deaccessioned and the proceeds were used to acquire approximately 40 works of modern art, including examples of Cubism, Expressionism, and Surrealism in order to build the "finest collection of contemporary art assembled on any American campus."

Now one of the finest university collections in the United States, the Museum contains strong holdings of 19th, 20th, and 21st century European and American paintings, sculptures, prints, installations, and photographs. In 2004, the Museum was renamed the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum and linked to Washington University's newly formed Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts. The museum opened in its new building, designed by Pritker Prize-winning architect Fumihiko Maki in 2006.

The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum building features spacious galleries that accommodate large-scale and new media exhibitions, an intimate setting to view works from the Museum's permanent collection, and a 5,000-square foot outdoor sculpture garden. In addition to a thematic installation of works from the Museum's outstanding permanent collection, the Kemper Art Museum features both temporary and major loan exhibitions throughout the year, presenting examples of significant international modern and contemporary art and design.

Visiting the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum
     Visiting Hours:
          Monday, Wednesday, & Thursday: 11 am - 6 pm
          Friday: 11 am - 8 pm
          Saturday & Sunday: 11 am - 6 pm
          Closed Tuesdays and University holidays
There is no charge to visit the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum.
  Through August 6, 2017
2017 MFA Thesis Exhibition: This exhibition features thesis projects by the twenty-five students in the graduating class of Washington University’s Graduate School of Art in the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at the Kemper Art Museum. The 2017 MFA candidates are Meelee Ahn, Heather Alfaro, Waller Huntsberry Austin, Shawn Burkard, Colton Carter, Jonathan Cornell, Ryan Doyle, Sara Fleenor, Wei Huang, Kahlil Robert Irving, Brittany Jasin, Moon Kim, Xizi Liu, Yihuang Lu, Whitney Meredith, Clayton Petras, Natalie Rainer, Tommy Riefe, Edo Rosenblith, Allana Ross, Melissa Shelton, Maggie J. Tarr, Anna Tucker, Kari Varner, and Chloe West.

For more information visit the exhibit's webpage

Location: The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum is located on the eastern edge of the campus of Washington University near the intersection of Skinker Blvd. and Lindell Blvd directly west of Forest Park. Finding parking for the museum can be a chore due to a construction project.

GPS Coordinates
N  38  38.838
W 90  18.183

Learn more about the St. Louis area.

Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum - Official site of the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum organization with answers to all the questions you may have.
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